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Michael Chavis tops MLB Pipeline’s top 30 prospects

Another prospect list

Boston Red Sox Photo Day Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

We’ve taken a bit of a break from prospect season over the last couple of weeks, and the timing worked out pretty well as it matched right up with the period in which Boston decided to do a couple things. Well, not we’re back to the grind with MLB Pipeline releasing their top 30 prospects. Honestly, we’ve seen enough of these lists that there isn’t a ton to talk about, but we’ll go over a few bullet points with the most interesting takeaways from this list. You can check out the full top-30 here, and you can see Jim Callis’ write-up of the system here.

  • It’s no surprise that Michael Chavis is ranked ahead of Jason Groome on this list, only because they’ve already released their top-100 prospects in baseball and the former was ahead of the latter on that list too. We’ve talked about it before, but there is an argument for this order even if it’s not one that I’d make. Mostly, it comes down to valuing proximity over ceiling while also believing in Chavis’ hit tool and not worrying about his defense.
  • Cole Brannen ranks sixth, which isn’t all that surprising and notable for last year’s second round pick. There are some reasons to be excited after this, though, MLB Pipeline ranks Brannen as the team’s best runner and best defensive player, a skillset that theoretically gives him a solid floor. Along with that, they are giving him a 50 hit tool and a 45 power tool. Those surely aren’t great, but it’s not crazy to see him improve his bat by just a bit in his first full season.
  • C.J. Chatham came in at number ten on this list, the first time he was ranked this highly this winter. The shortstop prospect still has the same potential he had when he was drafted a few years ago, but he hasn’t really gotten a chance to play as a pro yet. This is obviously a huge season for Chatham as he enters his age-23 season, and he’ll need to perform well and fly through the system after a season-and-a-half of missed baseball.
  • MLB Pipeline loves the new additions to the farm system from the past year, at least relative to the rest of the system. Of the top 20 prospects on this list, eight players were either part of last year’s draft class or part of the July 2 International Signing class. Those players were: Tanner Houck (3), Brannen (6), Alex Scherff (8), Jake Thompson (13), Danny Diaz (14), Antoni Flores (17), Brett Netzer (19), Tyler Esplin (20). Obviously not every one of these players is going to work out, but if you are high on this group then theoretically you are leaving the door open for Boston’s farm system to climb in the next year or two.
  • Coming in at number 18 was Pedro Castellanos, who was someone I was happy to see ranked so (relatively) highly. I’ve never seen Castellanos play and this mostly comes from scouting the stat line, but he was a hit machine in the GCL last year and performed well in a late-season promotion to Greenville, too. During Minor Lines season there aren’t a lot of guys who stand out in the short-season leagues, but Castellanos was someone whose numbers jumped out every day. For what it’s worth, MLB Pipeline gave him a 55 hit tool, tied with Sam Travis for the best in the system.

Red Sox Top Prospect Roundup

Player Sox Prospects Baseball America Baseball Prospectus Minor League Ball Keith Law MLB Pipeline Fangraphs Average
Player Sox Prospects Baseball America Baseball Prospectus Minor League Ball Keith Law MLB Pipeline Fangraphs Average
Jay Groome 1 1 1 1 1 2 1.00
Michael Chavis 2 2 2 2 2 1 2.00
Bryan Mata 3 4 3 4 4 4 3.60
Tanner Houck 4 3 4 3 3 3 3.40
Sam Travis 5 7 10 6 5 5 6.60
Josh Ockimey 6 N/A 5 13 14 11 9.50
Cole Brannen 7 5 7 12 8 6 7.80
Mike Shawaryn 8 8 6 5 11 9 7.60
Alex Scherff 9 9 8 8 6 8 8.00
Jalen Beeks 10 N/A N/A 7 N/A 15 8.50
Darwinzon Hernandez 14 6 N/A 9 10 7 9.75
Marco Hernandez N/A 10 N/A N/A N/A N/A 10.00
Lorenzo Cedrola 31 N/A 9 N/A N/A N/A 20.00
Jake Thompson 16 N/A N/A 10 7 13 11.00
Travis Lakins 19 N/A N/A N/A 9 16 14.00
C.J. Chatham 12 N/A N/A 15 N/A 10 12.33